Georgia law aggressively protects people’s property rights and criminalizes robbery with some stiff punishments. The amount of time you spend in prison will depend on the circumstances surrounding the robbery and your own criminal history.
Robbery in Georgia
Georgia statute 16-8-40 states that someone commits robbery when they take property from another person
- By force;
- By intimidation, threats, or coercion, including putting the victim in fear of serious bodily harm to themselves or another person;
- By sudden snatching.
For example, if you run up to someone on the sidewalk and punch them before grabbing their purse, you’ve committed robbery. However, if you agree to carry someone’s purse but then refuse to hand it back over, you haven’t committed robbery because the other person gave the purse to you voluntarily.
Furthermore, if you commit robbery with a weapon, you have committed armed robbery. According to section 16-8-41, armed robbery involves taking property from another by using an offensive weapon or any device that appears to be an offensive weapon.
Prison Terms Vary
Georgia criminal law seeks to punish people depending on the seriousness of their crime, with more serious crimes warranting potentially longer prison sentences. To that end, you face the following minimum and maximum amounts of time in prison:
- If you are convicted of robbery, you face a minimum of 1 year in prison and a maximum of 20 years.
- If you rob someone age 65 or older, you face at least 5 years in prison but no more than 20 years.
- If you commit armed robbery, you can face a minimum of 10 years up to a life sentence.
These sentences are expressed as a range so that the judge has the discretion to give you more or less time depending on other circumstances like your criminal history. If this is not your first criminal offense, you can expect to receive more than the minimum. Likewise, if you don’t express any remorse for your crime, you might also receive a longer prison sentence.
Defenses to Robbery
The best defense is to raise doubt that you actually were the person who committed the robbery. It isn’t unusual for eyewitnesses to become confused, especially if a weapon was used. Research has shown that witnesses tend to focus on the weapon and not on the suspect’s face during a robbery. Also, many robberies are committed in the evening, which also reduces visibility.
At Mitnick & Associates, our team will gather as much evidence as possible to identify whether the police have the wrong suspect. We’ll talk to your alibi witnesses and review surveillance footage to challenge the police identification of you as the suspect.
Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney in Georgia Today
Robbery is a serious crime with serious penalties, and you’ll need the best criminal defense attorney in your corner to fight the charges. At Mitnick & Associates, we work tirelessly to pinpoint weaknesses in the state’s case and get the most favorable result possible for our clients. Call us today at 770-408-7000 to set up your initial consultation or fill out our contact form.